Hailing from Finland, the members of Stench of Decay
bring the token “Old School Death Metal” sound into the 21st century with Where Death and Decay Reign
. Though Stench of Decay
aren’t exactly expounding upon what the genre known as Death Metal has already produced, they certainly warrant some attention. Jussi Rajala provides both rhythm guitar and vocals for the band, and he doesn’t disappoint. His vocals aren’t exactly unique, which is expected with most all death metal bands, but they certainly get the job done accompanying the catchy, Convulse
-like, riffs played by both Jussi and the lead guitarist Rami Simelius. Rami’s playing is the definition of solid, his riffs are always catchy and his guitar solo’s will take you back to the 90’s, what more could you ask for?
Markus Hietamies sits behind the kit for Stench of Decay
, and his drumming does anything but disappoint. The tasteful fills played in Creation of Carnal Lust
are only one example of his drumming prowess. Markus’ playing exceptionally compliments that of his band mates, while never taking centre stage but never falling short. However, this cannot be said for bassist, Tommi Sookari, unfortunately the bass is barely at all audible and on an “Old School Death Metal” record, a healthy dose of bass is a must have. I do not know if this was a decision made by the label or the band itself, but either way it hurts the demo.
At the beginning of Into the Depths of Madness
the same catchy guitar riff from the previous song, Creation of Carnal Lust
, is repeated for a couple of bars, then is replaced by an even catchier modification to the original riff. Some may find this repetitive but I have no problem with this, they mislead the listener and then provide an even stronger riff to back them up. The rest of the tracks play out in a similar fashion, catchy riffs, catchy vocals, strong percussion section, barely audible bass, though they are by no means weak, they just provide the same elements the first two do. However, the third track is an Abhorrence
cover, did I mention we were back in the 90’s yet?
Ultimately, Where Death and Decay Reign
is an excellent demo from such a young band, but is held back due to the fact that only three original songs are present on the demo, and the lack of audible bass. However, Where Death and Decay Reign
is definitely a release to be noted in today’s metal scene, and is the definition of an overlooked record.